School’s out for summer. As teens rejoice everywhere, moms and dads face the daunting task of adding being a taxi driver to the list of parental duties. Oh, the sunshine and long days!
But also the sunshine and long days of keeping your teens entertained.
And summer is often when they start nagging you to get their own learner’s licence.
Before now, you were faced with dead ends—figuratively speaking. If you didn’t own a car, you simply couldn’t teach your kids. If you use carshare, they weren’t allowed to drive them. And if you did choose to buy a car or you already owned your own, you’d then have to pay a hefty sum and risk your clean-driving record.
But before you get heart palpitations at the thought of your kid driving, there is an alternative, which is both safe and affordable—whether you have your own car or not.
That’s because, for the first time in North America, our very own local carshare, Modo, has made it possible for young learners to take the wheel.
While other carshare operators require drivers aged 19 or over with an N licence, Modo’s new and inclusive Green Program puts teens aged 16 or older—with an L licence—in the driver’s seat.
This new initiative, which launched on July 1, means you can also enjoy all the great benefits that come with carsharing. It’s more sustainable, convenient, and affordable while also making learning and driving accessible to your teen.
And surely there could not be a better time than now to get some practise in.
Below, we list all the reasons why you’ll want your teen to use carshare to get driving this summer.
Modo members pay about $600 a year to use the service, compared to the average cost of $9,500 to own and operate a vehicle in the Lower Mainland. Under the new program, Green members aged 16 or older with an L licence can be added to a primary member’s Modo Plus (shareholding) account if they live at the same address and the primary member is 25+ with a full licence.
And having access to 600 Modo vehicles across the Lower Mainland, Vancouver Island, and the Okanagan means you can practise with your teen along with a handful of professional lessons instead of doling out hundreds of dollars for practise hours solely with a driving school.
Furthermore, you can benefit from the best insurance possible—$5 million of third-party liability—without having to pay the hefty premium to insure your teen on your own personal car.
Not to mention the expense of gas and repairs.
It’s safe and local
With a mixture of professional lessons and lots of practise with Mom and Dad, you know that your teen is learning to drive in the best possible way.
And since Modo is a co-op, your dollars are going toward supporting a local, member-owned business, which helps with local economic and social growth.
It’s convenient and flexible.
Once your teen has got their licence, they can help with the driving duties without commandeering your car and without the expense of buying them their own.
There’s also the flexibility in making sure you get the type of vehicle you need: Modo has pick-up trucks, SUVs, and minivans.
In the next 20 years, Metro Vancouver is expected to welcome another one million residents, which will translate into an additional 700,000 privately owned cars, at today’s rate of vehicle ownership. Scary stuff if you think about how bad traffic, congestion, and parking are already.
So with population and car ownership on the rise, carshare offers a more sustainable way to get around. Even better, of the 600 Modo cars available, one in five is electric or hybrid.
And by teaching your teen in a carshare vehicle, you’re instilling these behaviours in a future generation, which benefits both the membership and society at large.
After all, every Modo takes approximately nine to 13 private vehicles off the road.
Modo has been driving change for more than 20 years—pun intended. Although driving might not be the rite of passage that it once was, it is still a useful skill for young people to have. Beyond giving them independence, it also teaches them valuable lessons on responsibility, and it may even help with employability.
So consider Modo as offering all the benefits of having a car without the costs or hassle.
This is definitely the time to let your teen take you for a ride. And these days, with more multigeneration families as well as kids staying home for what might feel like forever, your 30-year-old with an L can join too!